CameraMator Offers Wireless Tethered Photography Using Your iPad

Usman Rashid of Irvine, California was photographing during a trip to Florida last year when started looking for a way to view his DSLR’s photos in real-time using his iPad. What he found was that existing solutions on the market were either too pricey or a pain in the butt.

Like any good entrepreneur, he set out to create a product that would meet his need. The result is a product called the CameraMator.

The system has two components: a wireless device and an app.

The wireless device can be mounted in a standard hotshoe (not required though) and plugs into the USB port on the side of your DSLR. The wireless device can create its own network or join an existing Wi-Fi network. Simply connect your iOS device to the appropriate network, launch the app, and you’re set:

Once it’s connected, you can control your camera using a special app. The app allows you, your subject, or your client to view your photographs as they’re being shot:

You can also change the settings on your camera and trigger the shutter directly from your iPad, or zoom into the full-res photos to see whether your images are coming out sharp:

Since the system can trigger your camera, a logical application would be automated shots. CameraMator offers intervalometer, HDR bracketing, and self-timer features for creating time-lapses and tone-mapped photos.

Rashid says that CameraMator is compatible with all the major camera brand DSLRs built in the past 5 years (though initially it will be only offered for Canon and Nikon cameras).

Here’s a video in which Rashid introduces the product:

The company has already found a manufacturer in China to produce the devices, but is currently looking to raise $80,000 through Kickstarter to start producing them. A $185 contribution will pre-order one of the devices, which will cost $199 at retail.

Check out the official website to learn more, or visit the Kickstarter page if you’d like to snag one.

  • Jay McIntyre

    How would you fire off camera flash though?

  • Jay McIntyre

    I don’t see how the system will allow you to fire off camera flashes.

  • CameraMator

    Jay, The device can be mounted on any grip, extender bar or even the camera strap. The kickstarter page shows the unit mounted on an L-bracket.

  • bob cooley

    It doesn’t appear that you HAVE to mount the unit on top of the camera (that’s just for convenience) – the connectivity is through the USB port…

  • Damien Broderick photography.

    Great idea. But only one problem. Its occupying the hotshoe. So no radio control for flash. And I know what your thinking. Just use sync cables. But that makes. I sends when I could simply save money tether with a cable and use my hotshoe as needed. Great idea. Would be interested if it didn’t occupy the hotshoe.

  • madmax

    Real time? I donĀ“t see why this product would be necessary. Much better look at pictures in a real big screen, not ipad.

  • Michael Zhang

    Ah, right. I think we were a bit unclear in describing it. Edited the post to clear up this confusion. Thanks.

  • Jim Titus

    How is $199 cheaper than something like an Eye-Fi card?

  • Eduardo

    It is discouraging that nobody seems to care that this will be manufactured out of the country.

  • Photograframer

    It is discouraging that nobody seems to care that this will be manufactured outside the country.

  • Zak Henry

    The hotshoe is just a convenient place to put it if you have a free shoe. It only needs the usb port to operate, you could velcro it to your tripod/flash/camera/face if your hotshoe is busy

  • Brett

    Read the article.

  • Angus

    Did you type this entry on a device made in the US? Nope. didn’t think so. Don’t be such a debbie downer..

  • 9inchnail

    It would cost 600 Dollars if they produced it in the US. You’re gonna pay that kind of money, Uncle Sam?

  • Lee Harris

    I was interested till the ‘only available for Canikon for now…’ That crowd has plenty of options what about the rest of us?

  • Mikhail Davydov

    There are slow speed issues with files transfer. Up to 60 seconds per file. Direct usb connection takes max 3s

  • Claartje

    Not very usefull for studiowork since every photographer will postprocess his pictures (and i mean postprocessing, not photoshopping). What’s the use in showing unedited pictures??

  • Aaro Keipi

    It would be discouraging to pay $400 for it if it was made in the USA.

  • Mansgame

    where does it save the files to? The card or the ipad? One thing I hate about Lightroom tethering is I don’t want to save the pictures on the computer there and trust the card more (since tethers can disconnect, etc.

    Also, no respectable photographer would use an ipad app to do the final post processing. Does it allow you to save the RAW files and later use Lightroom on the big computer?

  • Mansgame

    Get Nikon or Canon. There is a reason why pros choose those lines. I keep hearing “But Sony is just as good…” it might be but there are not enough users for companies to invest in them. Lens rental places don’t have enough room or money to keep inventory they rarely rent out.

  • Mansgame

    If they both use wifi, how is that possible?

  • seanlucky

    With Lightroom you can still shoot to the card at the same time (I do this all the time for the same reasons that you would want to).

    That being said, if everything’s put together well, you shouldn’t ever lose more than one shot in a tethering failure.

  • Antonio Carrasco

    Well people generally like to see what you’re doing in terms of framing, lighting posing.

  • Mansgame

    is that also true on Nikon? I thought it was only possible on the Canons.

  • Jim Titus

    Ah, so it’s wireless USB like I’ve seen some people hack together, not wifi. Now it makes sense.

  • fujivelvia

    The thing that concerns me is the “design”. It’s just SO big! 4x bigger than the ideal design for me.

  • Otto

    “No respectable photographer would use an iPad app to do final post processing.”

    That’s a sweeping and very broad generalization that requires knowledge not even the most “respectable” photographers – whoever they are – will ever have. I remember photographers saying the same thing when digital first started gaining market share, “Computers? I use film, I’m in the dark room. That’s real photography.” In a five to ten years you’ll feel different about tablets.

    Also, nice of you to take a shot at the unwashed masses who cannot yet afford your Big Super Computer but might like to start learn photography anyway. Cameras and supplies are expensive enough as it is. Last time I checked photography was not a class system.

  • AtlantaTerry

    This website is badly designed. Once I am here I can not return from whence I came. Not good or professional.
    Terry Thomas
    Atlanta, Georgia USA

  • AtlantaTerry

    OOPS, I was slightly wrong. Sometimes I can go back. Other times I’m stuck here. What’s up with that?

  • Adi Marwan

    or you could attach it to your belt and not having limited movement..

    it’s like having a battery pack for your flash..and attach it to the belt

  • Bryabnbear

    actually this guys comment is very valid professional photographers tether to macs and pc because of the ability to use lightroom and photoshop to post process. I dont see photoshop on ipad or android to the same power as a desktop or laptop machine. I have an android tablet so I know what im talking about. And the hotshoe debate is correct where are you gonna put your wireless slave for your strobes to fire from? These are important concerns. You also have to remember not all people use canon and nikon what about the medium format camera people thier software for their digital camera backs isnt availble on ipad or android for a digital back that retails in the 10grand to 20grand price market. No joke some equipment is that expensive and I dont think I would post process on ipad for a digitalback equiped medium format either.

  • Otto

    You make very good points. If the other commenter had been that specific I would have been easier on him. He just seemed to be smugly generalizing. As for tablets, right now they’re not ready for the post-processing you wrote about but in time it could be, that was my point. Since we the ability to easily store and sync photos across devices, the cloud, etc., I think it’s best to keep an open mind and experiment. Granted, experimentation probably isn’t an option if you’re on assignment but in my opinion it’s good to stay open to new ideas. Thanks for the reply and your time.

  • Brandon Hoe

    I do product photography and just the ability to review images on a larger screen and check for the presence of dust and proper focus would be useful to me.

  • Tom Clarke

    What does this cumbersome device have over a Eye-Fi Pro X2 8GB card for $99 and iOS app Shuttersnitch at $15.99?

  • wmsey

    For those of you trying to compare this device to a EyeFi Pro X2… As a client on a network the EyeFi Pro does just fine. I shoot corporate interiors and I gave up long ago asking to join their locked down networks. As a WiFi Hotspot, which is how this device seems to operate, it is very hit and miss. The EyeFi will transmit, over a limited range and then, with no apparent reason, stop transmitting. Images are buffered so when it “decides” to act as a hotspot again then it belches out all the images that have been taken while it was out to lunch. Very unimpressive if you have handed the iPad to an art director or other client when this sort of thing happens.

    Not incidentally, the EyeFi has no camera controls – it’s a SD card and a pokey one at that. This device connects using USB and therefore (in theory) acts as a wireless “tether” to the camera. So, barely any overlap between this and the EyeFi.

  • Kwik Clicks Photographics

    It doesnt have to occupy the hotshoe. You could velcro to the tripod if you wanted.

  • Travel Entertainment iPads

    Great pictures make lasting impressions. iPads used as props in campaigns can create great appeal. Upgrade to your photo shoot, rent an iPad (or two), if you do not already own one.

  • Will

    When using the wireless system. How do you retrieve the photos from your ipad when the session is complete?